CHIMACUM — Chimacum School Board member Kevin Miller, who is stepping down from his position after 16 years of service, will be honored by school board members and school staff at the board’s meeting today.
The meeting will be at 6 p.m. at Chimacum High School, 91 West Valley Road.
“I’m going to turn 60 next year, so I felt it was a good time to close this chapter and start a new one,” Miller said.
Miller said he decided not to run for re-election to the District 5 seat to give other community members the ability to serve their community.
“I just felt it was someone else’s turn,” Miller said. “I wanted to open up the position so the community would have an opportunity to vote on it.”
Wilma Hackman and Jack McKay are vying for the position on the Nov. 7 ballot. Ballots were mailed to registered voters last Wednesday.
Miller was elected to the school board in 2002 after being appointed in 2001 and has since run in only one contested election.
“He’s an outstanding leader,” said Chimacum Superintendent Rick Thompson. “He’s positive, he speaks well of public education and he was highly connected in the school directors’ association.”
Miller has lived on Marrowstone Island since 1989 with his wife, Susan. They sent all three of their children through the Chimacum School District.
“When I got on the board, all my kids were out of school,” Miller said. “So I got their permission first.”
Before the school board, Miller served on such community boards as the Jefferson County Home Builders Association, the Economic Development Council and Jefferson County Conservation Futures boards. He has been a member of the East Jefferson Rotary Club and Marrowstone Island Community Association.
Miller said one of the larger accomplishments he was a part of during his tenure on the school board was the filing of the lawsuit that resulted in the state Supreme Court’s McCleary decision.
“It changed school funding across the state,” Miller said. “Chimacum was the example in that decision.”
However, Miller said sometimes it’s the smaller projects that make the biggest difference in the lives of students.
“McCleary is the obvious big one,” Miller said.
Miller cited the Focus Program, which allows former students who didn’t graduate to come back and finish their high school education.
Miller also helped implement the Pi Program, a state-regulated alternative learning experience that offers multi-age classes on campus with additional work sent home to be done with a parent or guardian.
“It’s been a great addition to the Chimacum School District,” Miller said.
Miller also was one of the originators of the Jefferson County Education Partnership, which brought together the Chimacum, Port Townsend, Quilcene and Brinnon school districts to allow collaboration between the four districts, according to Thompson.
“We really came together to figure out how to help each other,” Miller said.
Miller works as a real estate agent in Jefferson County and plans to continue with that after retirement.
“He’s had an all-around super performance, and I’m going to miss him dearly,” Thompson said.
Jefferson County Editor/